Let's Grow Bahamas
It's Harvest Time, Baby!
By Luckner Timothee
Dec 23, 2012 - 11:07:00 AM

The author with two bunches of bananas

It is finally the end of the year and I can say without any doubt that “2012” has truly been a learning experience for me. I have shared quite a few things, explained their purposes and suggested some interesting fruit trees you should add to your garden for various purposes.

This year we had to combat with the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy and it made me realize that we do live in a really weat her-active area during the summer which makes farming a little more difficult, but not impossible.

I have written about herbs and bush medicine the majority of this year, which is why I want to focus more on growing food as we go for ward. We have too many lawns in The Bahamas and I think it’s time someone takes the initiative and helps change the mindset of our people into realizing the potential of their land.

Minister Darville and his administration may speak of farming on a grand scale, but it’s farmers like myself who must take the lead in this movement. Food independence must start at home.  

It's not a political issue, but a people’s issue. Why do we wait until something disastrous happens, like major hurricanes, before we do something as basic as farming? Until we the people decide that the cost of buying groceries in food stores is too high, until the people decide that our food should not be coated in a toxic mud bath for us to serve our children, until we decide that we cannot be a fast -food nation like our neighbors, we will never become independent. I do agree that some of us are fortunate to have ideal soil and some of us in The Bahamas don't, but the one thing Bahamians cannot do is make excuses as to why they can't grow their own food.  

I think BAIC Chairman Arnold Forbes was right when he said earlier this year that, “food security is a major concern for The Bahamas," but I wonder when will the Bahamian people realize this. The agenda of food security can be pushed by the government, but if the people don’t realize the problem, the issue will never fully be addressed.  


Earlier this year it was said that The Bahamas has about 1000 farms compared to the 10,000 farms we had during the 1960’s. I think The Bahamas government 's fixation on a census from the 1960’s is rather nostalgic while Bahamians are becoming more and more eager to eat locally.  Grand scale farming will never be what it once was in The Bahamas while the people are still oblivious to the concept of farming. And while we try to understand what happened, our children are still unhealthy eaters and obesity continues to rise.    

Lunch boxes of most children in The Bahamas are filled with unhealthy snacks, not food and we wonder why diabetes is slowing becoming The Bahamas biggest killer ?  If we don’t teach our children the healthy approaches to eating then the next generation will be a nation of diabetics and we will be the ones held responsible.

Next year I will spend my time helping people who are interested in backyard farming, to finally begin the process of growing their own food. I have tested many methods in my backyard garden and all have worked.

Aside from growing food, I had to start looking at my garden from a scientific prospective to understand what was going on with the soil. I have grown turnips, tomatoes, lettuce, arugula, Swiss chards, potatoes, carrots, cabbages, radishes, romaine, celery, broccoli, cantaloupe, collards, cilantro and Kohl Rabi with great success. But what was happening after I harvested these crops was the most important part of maintaining a healthy garden. These are just some of the issues I want to write about into next year.

And although I have been very successful, I am still learning and so will you. We will look at a lot of stuff from feeding your soil and not just your plants, to fruits that most people didn’t know were native to The Bahamas. I have tried almost everything in one year that I can and I have grown food. I am no guru, so therefore you can do it as well . Won’t you start with me?

I believe with every journey in life it takes but one step. When are you going to take that step, that finally step to becoming a self-efficient household ? Next year I am planning on cutting my household food bill by half on the produce that we buy monthly. You should too!

So as I end the year of 2012 I will be harvesting my crops and enjoying them with my family and friends. I hope next year most of you will be able to do the same. Come with me and take that step in finally starting your very own garden. I will do my best to help you and answer any questions you may have alon g the way.

I want to wish you and yours a safe holiday and hopefully next year this time the food you are eating will be the ones you have grown like I am doing this holiday season. Join me next month on how to start a garden. I will also be feat uring interviews with people that are backyard farmers.

Let's Grow Bahamas!

Grown in Grand Bahama

About the Author: Luckner Timothee is a backyard Farmer in Grand Bahama since starting his garden a few years ago he has wooed his friends with his produce and creative farming ideas. He continually learns from his friends and family about the process of farming and the struggles that a farmer goes through daily. He is now working on a Web show called “Let’s Grow Bahamas” to be released on “Grand Bahama Backyard Farmers”. He is attending seminars in order to meet other farmers around the world and to further his knowledge about Farming. To contact Luckner Timothee email him at:


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